Sunday, January 02, 2005

The mythical $35 million Pfizer tsunami donation.

The right-wing blogosphere has been pretty much wetting themselves with self congratulations, rubbing everyone's nose in how one of those nasty, evil pharmaceutical companies, Pfizer, is donating $35 million in emergency relief aid to tsunami victims. But when you read more closely:

Pfizer Inc., the world's biggest drugmaker, is donating $35 million to victims of the weekend's earthquake and tsunamis in Asia, matching the aid the U.S. government has said it will provide.

The company said in a statement today it will provide $10 million in cash to relief groups and $25 million more in products, including its Zithromax, Zyvox and Diflucan anti-infectives.

Oops. Now that's not quite the same thing as $35 million in cash, is it? To be fair, it's certainly nice of Pfizer to be this generous, but it would be nice if, just this once, the conservative attack poodles and howler monkeys were actually honest about what was happening. Ah, well, when you've been dishonest your whole life, it does become a hard habit to break, doesn't it?

Did someone say "massive tax writeoff"?


Jay Gatsby said...

Wait just a minute... Ok, so it would be better if Pfizer gave them just cash? I mean, what wouls they buy with it? That's right, medicine. The amount of medicine they are giving away equals 25 million, so I wouldnt be talking. Not to mention that Pfizer lost many of its employees over there, on vacation. They really do want to help, and (in case you havnt noticed)the products they are giving away are exactly what people would be buying with the money. And lets not forget the 10 million in cash. How much have you donated CC? I dont even see a link to any place one could donate on your blog. Before you call what Pfizer is doing "mythical", go ahead and buy 25 million in products for those people AND give them 10 million in cash. I mean, come are bringing down a wonderful contribution by a private company because the liberal base thinks its "evil". Why dont you just congradulate them?

dabydeen said...

Jay -- Pfizer's offer is nice. It's welcomed. But Pfizer is not doing anything that isn't to its advantage and to the advantage of its shareholders -- even if it's just building public goodwill. Companies exist for only one reason -- to increase shareholder value, even if it means 'hanging themselves with their own noose' -- to badly paraphrase someone. Pfizer is donating the $25 million in products because it makes business sense. It's a good thing it also makes social sense as well. And some of the good people at Pfizer probably do have that in their hearts. Good for them.

CC said...

From CC:

You do have to love the way Mr. Gatsby changes the subject to avoid the very point I was trying to make. Note very carefully how I wrote, "To be fair, it's certainly nice of Pfizer to be this generous...".

As anyone (well, anyone moderately literate) can read, my quibble is not specifically with Pfizer. Rather, it's with the conservatives who insist on referring to Pfizer's donation as "$35 million in cash." In fact, let me quite from Mr. Gatsby's very own blog:

"Now, in the wake of the catastrophic events in Asia, Pfizer is giving away $35 million to help the victims of the earthquake. Yes indeed, the company that Moore wants to call evil is giving away an amount of money equal to what the entire United States is donating."Of course, as I have already pointed out, Pfizer is doing nothing of the sort. It's not Pfizer's donation that was the point of my post -- it's how the right-wing blogosphere (Mr. Gatsby included) insists on lying about it. Quelle surprise.

CC said...

From CC:

Sorry, that should have read "let me quote from Mr. Gatsby's own blog ...".

dabydeen said...

Oh, you don't have to call him 'Mister.' But it is funny when you do!